When a worker is injured on the job and more than one company is involved, or more than one person, a standard workplace accident claim may not be enough to address the legal issues at hand. This is very common in the construction industry, where multiple trades are carried out on the same site. For example, if an employee working in one trade (such as the flooring specialist) is involved in the injuries sustained by another employee in another trade (such as the carpenter), the injured party may seek legal recourse. However, a work accident claim will not cover certain aspects of the accident and injuries, such as pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment, etc. When this is the case, you need to file a third-party liability claim.
Another example in which it may be necessary to file a third-party liability claim, is in the event that a person whose profession is driving or that driving is part of their job responsibilities suffers an accident while driving within their working hours. . It will be a workers' compensation case since the injuries were sustained on the job, but, however, since the accident was caused by someone other than the employer, a third-party liability lawsuit will better address the legal issue at hand.
What is third-party liability?
To understand what third-party liability is, you must first understand the definitions of first and second-degree liability.
- First-degree liability, or first-degree insurance coverage, is a policy that applies to the insured (first party, that is, you). Liability in the first degree applies when the insured person is also the person who commits the fault.
- Liability in the second degree refers to your employer. In these cases, there is a contractual relationship or obligation between the injured party (you) and the other insurance company (your employer) to act in good faith.
- Third-party liability, or third-party insurance coverage, is when you (the first party) are injured by a person or company other than your employer (ie, a third party).
In the cases described above, the first party will be the injured employee, while the flooring installer or the driver who commits the fault will be the third party. Because third-party liability is present in both situations, a personal injury case can be considered.